Snow played an important role in Bajrangi Bhaijaan, but also caused some unusual issues. Since transporting the several hundred extras for the climax scene became difficult, about 75% of them had to be graphically generated using a crowd simulator called ‘Miarmy’.
“Sometimes the CGI characters were walking right next to the real extras we had on location, and even I could not tell them apart. I would critique one guy for having a funny walk only to be told that it was actually a real person, not CGI!” Keith Devlin revealed.
Many scenes had to be digitally manipulated to ensure Kashmir’s visual splendour. Devlin also pointed out how the climax would not have been possible without extensive VFX use. “It wasn’t realistic, or possible, to build a full border fence that extended as far as the eye can see,” he recalled.
To facilitate this, Prime Focus worked with around 100 artists, handling approximately 800 VFX shots for the movie. It went on to win the ‘Best VFX in Feature Film – India category’ at the 24 FPS Annual International Animation Awards 2015. But for Devlin, the biggest reward is that few moviegoers noticed the VFX shots in this film; the true hallmark of good CGI.